Tag Archives: Magazine industry
BusinessTN, a six-year-old magazine that covers Tennessee business, is stopping its print publication, writes editor Drew Ruble.
Ruble writes, “BusinessTN‘s brand of journalism is not going completely away. The brand will maintain a digital presence at www.businesstn.com, which will continue to serve as a vibrant daily repository of the most significant business news affecting Tennessee. Also, the magazine’s popular e-mail products — the BTN eBriefs and the BTN eWeekly — will continue.
“In BusinessTN‘s place, we will present a new publication focused on Middle Tennessee business, Nashville Post magazine. The new magazine piggybacks on the well-established breaking news business online source for the Nashville area, NashvillePost.com, a sister publication in the SouthComm Publishing corporate family. Now entering its tenth year as a respected business news outlet in Music City, the Nashville Post brand only stands to grow in its level of engagement and relevance to the Middle Tennessee marketplace with its own bimonthly print companion.
“While the statewide print publication may be departing, it should not be taken as a sign that its mission is not still needed, if not indeed vital, to the economic health of our state as a whole.”
Read more here.
TALKING BIZ NEWS EXCLUSIVE
The first decade of the 21st century began with business journalists facing criticism for their boosterish coverage of companies during the tech bubble and ended with many of the same reporters facing more criticism for failing to warn consumers about the current economic crisis.
In between, the world of business journalism underwent dramatic changes that make the field only vaguely similar to what it looked like back on Jan. 1, 2000.
Talking Biz News believes the following 10 events — ranked in order of importance — were the most important to business journalism during the past decade. If you’d like to nominate another event, please post a comment.
1. The demise of the daily business section: At the beginning of the decade, standalone business sections in metro newspapers across the country were the primary source of news for those seeking information about business, the markets and the economy. As 2009 closes, they’re now an afterthought. Many of these papers have only themselves to blame — the cutting of printed stock listings and the downsizing of business news staffs have cut the quality and quantity of business news they provide.
2. The biz magazine shakeout: Goodbye Business 2.0, one of the hippest business magazines ever printed. Hello, and goodbye, to Conde Nast Portfolio. So long, Fortune Small Business and BusinessWeek SmallBiz. In addition, Inc., Fast Company and BusinessWeek were sold to new owners, Fortune cut its printed issues by 33 percent and Forbes sold a minority stake of itself. None have been able to find a new formula for success.
3. The rise of Bloomberg News: At the beginning of the decade, Bloomberg was simply another wire service that competed against the AP, Reuters, Dow Jones Newswires and the now-defunct Bridge News. Now, it has the largest staff of business journalists anywhere. It owns BusinessWeek magazine, and it’s overhauling its TV operations to compete with CNBC and Fox Business Network. The contest for business news dominance now appears to be a two-horse race between Bloomberg and Dow Jones.
4. Dow Jones sale to News Corp.: Rupert Murdoch added the parent company of The Wall Street Journal, Barron’s, Marketwatch.com and Dow Jones Newswires in 2007 to his far-flung media operations. Along with the Fox Business Network, News Corp. now has a presence in delivering business news in every major platform. The Journal has continued to grow its subscription base and has led the pack in requesting consumers pay for business news online.
5. Cable biz news wars: After CNNfn went off the air in 2004, CNBC had the cable business news market to itself for the next three years, until 2007 when the Fox Business Network was launched. Amid criticism that it was too bullish at the beginning of the decade and too defensive of Wall Street at the end of the decade, CNBC continued to dominate business news on TV.
6. Lessons learned: Yes, business journalism was asleep at the wheel in failing to provide adequate coverage of tech, Internet and telecom companies in the first part of the decade. But many biz reporters learned their lesson, and the coverage in the latter part of the decade about the housing bubble and Wall Street problems was much better. And I don’t buy the argument that financial journalism should have warned consumers what was coming; we are not fortune tellers.
7. KHOU-TV’s coverage of bad tires: This was the 2000 coverage of the Firestone problems on Ford Explorers that led to dozens of deaths, and it was a stark reminder that the best business journalism is investigative and questions companies, searching for answers when a company stonewalls. It led to an overall more adversarial approach to business journalism for the rest of the decade.
8. Jon Stewart’s takedown of Jim Cramer: Forget the back and forth between the two combatants here. Simply put, “The Daily Show” hosts montage of bad calls by Cramer put into focus what every serious business journalist knows: You don’t ever predict something, particularly involving investments or money, in print or on the air. Sadly, Cramer’s not the only one who does this.
9. Pulitzer winners abound: From the 2002 win by Gretchen Morgenson of the New York Times for her coverage of Wall Street to the 2008 win by Washington Post business columnist Steve Pearlstein and the 2009 win by Alexandra Berzon of the Las Vegas Sun, the Pulitzer committee recognized that business journalism was prescient and performed its watchdog role.
10. New delivery systems: iPhones and Blackberries now act as a transmitter of The Wall Street Journal and other major business media outlets. Twitter sends headlines of breaking news. Kindles and Sony Readers can do all and more. The newspaper is not dead as a medium of business news, but it now has more competition from a variety of options.
A quarterly business magazine called Get Money aimed at the inner city market has been launched.
The magazine will hit newsstands across the country next Tuesday, Dec. 29.
The magazine says that its content is similar to more traditional business magazines such as Forbes and Fortune magazines and that articles covering business structures, investing, real estate, business planning, money management, and financial motivation form the basis of its content. However, the cover of the first issue looks nothing like Forbes or Fortune.
“The mission ofÂ Get MoneyÂ magazine is to forever change the way young urban adults think about getting money, investing money, and keeping money, thereby inspiring the consistent actions necessary to create generational wealth,” said Get Money CEO Kolie Crutcher in a statement.
The newsstand cover price forÂ Get MoneyÂ is $5.99. Itcan also be purchased online or in person from Black Star Music and Film in Harlem, N.Y.Â The yearly subscription price is $11.95, and the two-year subscription price is $19.95.
Read more here.
Amy Wicks of Women’s Wear Daily reports Wednesday that WSJ., the glossy magazine from The Wall Street Journal, plans to double its circulation and increase the number of issues by 50 percent in 2010.
Wicks writes, “Beginning in March, The Wall Street Journalâ€™s quarterly glossy magazine WSJ. will raise its circulation to 1.6 million from 800,000 and increase its publishing schedule to six issues a year.
“In addition to being available to all subscribers to the Journal in the U.S., WSJ. will be sold on newsstands. Issues will run in March, May, June, September, October and December. According to a statement, the magazine has attracted 64 new advertisers to the Journal franchise.
“In September, the Journal said it planned to do four issues next year plus two online-only issues, while now all the issues will be print based.”
Read more here.
Vanessa Voltolina of Folio reports that of the 428 magazines that folded in 2009, only regional publications had more deaths than the business magazine category, according to data from MediaFinder.com.
Voltolina writes, “But while the number of ceased titles may be fewer than years past, there have also been fewer launches. There were only 275 startups this year versus 335 in 2008. Regional magazines topped the list with 21 launches, including Maine Magazine and B-metro Birmingham.
“Regionals, however, also topped the list of shutdowns (34), with titles such Atlanta Life and Denver Living going under. Business magazine shutdowns came in second (16), with casualties including BusinessWeek Small Biz, CondÃ© Nast Portfolio and Fortune Small Business.
“The Health category had the second highest number of launches (15), including Scottsdale Health and Natural Awakenings. Food titles came next with 14 new magazines such as Food Network Magazine, Edible Queens, and Sandra Lee Semi-Homemade.”
Read more here.
Alan Webber, one of the co-founders of Fast Company magazine, writes on Folio Monday that the remaining business magazines need to reinvent themselves for readers rather than just trying to survive.
Webber writes, “They want authenticity, integrity, and real dialog â€” and instead they feel theyâ€™ve been getting a steady diet of status-quo thinking, round-up-the-usual-suspects journalism, and convenient excuses for why things canâ€™t change.
“The exciting truth is we are at the threshold of a new era in business. All over the world weâ€™re witnessing massive discontinuities in how work gets done, who does it, how value is created, where it gets created â€” one epoch is ending, another is just being born. What business magazines need to do is to embrace the changes and challenges that are rocking the world of business â€” get in front of the evolving story line; engage readers in a conversation; challenge the status quo instead of offering bland reassurances that the status quo will prevail; generate useful, provocative debate; discover new voices who champion new ideas and unconventional practices.
“Itâ€™s not just a matter of finding a way to stay in business; itâ€™s a matter of having a purpose for being in business in the first place. Entrepreneurship is the answer to the companies business magazines cover; itâ€™s also the answer to the future of the magazines themselves.”
Read more here.
Clifford writes, “The first part of that is making Harvard Business Review more current.
“When the Review was founded in 1922, it dispensed Harvard Business School research to the public. Its scope widened over the years, but articles tended to be scholarly, rather than news driven. By January 2009, for example, ‘HBR had barely written a thing, even indirectly, about the economic crisis,’ Mr. Ignatius said. ‘There was a sense, in the past, that HBR should not be timely,’ he said. ‘It was the idea that research is ready when research is ready.’
“Mr. Ignatius changed the publication schedule so the magazine could close just three weeks before publication, rather than more than six weeks before. He is adding articles that reflect the times. For example, the January/February issue includes an argument from a top professor that shareholder-focused capitalism is ending.
“The second part is adding standard magazine rubrics. The list of articles has been knocked off the cover (Mr. Ignatius actually removed it this year). ‘The problem was that people look at the table of contents, scan it, and say, no, Iâ€™m not interested in it.’
“He is adding columns by the strategy professor C. K. Prahalad and the economist Dan Ariely, a page on someone outside the business world called ‘Lifeâ€™s Work’ (Condoleezza Rice is the first subject), and a recurring feature called ‘Defend Your Research,’ where academics are quizzed about their studies. And he is arranging a few articles in issues around themes like reinvention and strategy during a weak recovery.”
Read more here.
Ann Mostue of the Maine Public Broadcasting Network interviewed Maine Ahead editor in chief Tori Britton about the launch of the new business magazine.
Here is an excerpt:
Anne Mostue: So, what about the decision to start a business, let alone a print publication, during such a recession? This magazine was about two years in the making?
TB: We were actually getting out to get investors in our parent company which is Webster Atlantic and then the economy went in the tank. So we had to take longer to develop this basically on our own dime without having that cash come in. At a certain point we had to launch and I remember reading something about most of the great companies that are still here today were born during the Great Depression. I mean, it’s opportunity as well as risk. I do think that business people especially are looking for answers so it is a great time to come out into the marketplace with a publication that is grounding.
AM: So can you tell us a little bit about what’s inside the magazine?
TB: Well, what you have to do with a magazine is you have to create a template. You have to create something that people can expect month after month. In each issue we’ll have what’s called a podium, it’s going to be an interview with someone that is important and articulate, hopefully they’ll be forthcoming. In our first issue we talk with Ron Hodges who is the CEO of Hannaford. And he does a great interview but most people haven’t heard from him and he’s Maine’s second highest employer. And then we have something called Private Tour where you go inside a place where you, a consumer or a business person might wonder what it’s like inside. So we’ll take you inside, show you things and tell you how it all works. And so our first issue is Shipyard.
Read more here.
Flamm writes, “This summer, the financial information giant hired Time Inc. veteran Michael Dukmejian as the title’s first full-time publisher, and he’s been busy pumping up advertising. Revenue â€” down 11% for the year â€” rose 14% for the December issue.
â€œ’From our standpoint,’ he says, all the attention ‘has been helpful. A lot of people are asking questions about us,’ including advertisers.
“Mr. Dukmejian’s plans include opening sales offices in San Francisco and Chicago, growing circulation to 400,000 copies from 315,000 over the next three years, and telling readers who aren’t terminal subscribers about the title’s award-winning stories. ‘One of our goals,’ says editor Ronald Henkoff, ‘is to get these articles in front of a wider group of people.’”
Read more here.
Sky Canaves of The Wall Street Journal writes about how Chinese business magazine Caijing is struggling in the aftermath of the departure of its editor and a majority of its staff.
Canaves writes, “The Nov. 23 issue underscores the uncertain future of the biweekly magazine. It was pulled together by a skeleton staff of fewer than 20 people. Out of 59 Beijing-based reporters listed on the last Caijing masthead, only six remain; 12 out of 14 domestic correspondents outside Beijing have gone, along with all four overseas correspondents in New York, Washington, London and Hong Kong.
“As a result, most of the articles in the current issue were commissioned from freelance writers. The cover story, on U.S. President Barack Obama’s visit to China this month, was written by a reporter who has since resigned.
“He Gang, until recently managing editor of Investor’s Journal, a weekly business paper, has been named managing editor of Caijing, responsible for day-to-day editorial operations.”
Read more here.